Students react to open letter by UVA Black Alumni

CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA. (WUSA9) - As the city of Charlottesville tries to get back to normal, thousands of students will be returning to the University of Virginia this weekend. 

It's the same place where just a week ago, white supremacist groups marched through campus with torches. In the wake of last weekend's events, black UVA alumni are showing their support to incoming freshman. 

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They wrote an open letter, posting it in the school's newspaper. Part of the letter read: 

To the Class of 2021,

Congratulations on being accepted to the University of Virginia, the number two public University in the nation. This place will become your home away from home as you form bonds with fellow classmates and build your academic knowledge to be the change you wish to see in the future. You are not here by happenstance, you deserve to be here!

Students on campus are responding to that letter, many of them showing their appreciation. 

"The letter means a lot because it’s good to know that you have others who have walked the same path to say hey we’re here for you," said UVA student Chiquita Melvin. 

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The letter goes on to say that the black alumni want the incoming freshman to know that they can count on them, the faculty and other students for support. 

Freshman Justin Ingram says the recent events on campus and in Charlottesville have put things into perspective for him, but he's still happy to be a UVA student. 

"It's a reminder that we all have worked very hard to get here and no one group should make you feel otherwise or unwanted. It should motivate you to go and do more," he said. 

© 2017 WUSA-TV


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